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Full text of "USPTO Patents Application 10828476"

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CFM03547/P204-0129 



WHAT IS CLAIMED IS: 

1. An image processing apparatus comprising: 
storage means for storing a plurality of 

electronic data as target comparison images; 
5 input means for inputting a reference comparison 

image obtained from a printed material; 

grayscale feature amount extraction means for 

extracting a grayscale feature amount of the reference 

comparison image; 
10 retrieval means for retrieving a target 

comparison image corresponding to the reference 

comparison image from said storage means by using the 

grayscale feature amount extracted by said grayscale 

feature amount extraction means; and 
15 processing means for extracting the image 

retrieved by said retrieval means from said storage 

means and processing the extracted image. 

2 . The apparatus according to claim 1 , wherein the 
grayscale feature amount comprises of one or an 

20 arbitrary combination of a plurality of types of a 

brightness feature amount, or a texture feature amount, 
or a shape feature amount of the reference comparison 
image . 

3. The apparatus according to claim 1, wherein said 
25 retrieval means compares a grayscale feature amount of 

the reference comparison image and a grayscale feature 
amount of the target comparison image, and outputs a 



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CFM03 547 /P204- 0129 



similar target comparison image as a retrieval result. 

4 . The apparatus according to claim 1 , further 
comprising color feature amount extraction means for 
extracting a color feature amount of a color of the 

5 reference comparison image, 

wherein said retrieval means retrieves the target 
comparison image corresponding to the reference 
comparison image from said storage means on the basis 
of the grayscale feature amount of the reference 
10 comparison image and the color feature amount of the 
reference comparison image. 

5 . The apparatus according to claim 4 , wherein the 
color feature amount includes at least one of a mode 
color and an average color in the reference comparison 

15 image. 

6. The apparatus according to claim 4, further 
comprising determination means for determining whether 
to retrieve the reference comparison image on the basis 
of color information, 

20 wherein when said determination means determines 

to retrieve the reference comparison image on the basis 
of color information, said color feature amount 
extraction means extracts the color feature amount of 
the reference comparison image, and said retrieval 

25 means retrieves the target comparison image 

corresponding to the reference comparison image from 
said storage means on the basis of the extracted color 



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CFM03547/P204-0129 



feature amount of the reference comparison image, and 
when said determination means determines not to 
retrieve the reference comparison image on the basis of 
color information, said grayscale feature amount 
5 extraction means extracts the grayscale feature amount 
of the reference comparison image, and said retrieval 
means retrieves the target comparison image 
corresponding to the reference comparison image from 
said storage means on the basis of the extracted 
10 grayscale feature amount of the reference comparison 
image . 

7 . The apparatus according to claim 1 , further 
comprising: 

display means for displaying a retrieval result 
15 by said retrieval means; and 

selection means for, when said display means 
displays a plurality of target comparison images as 
retrieval results by said retrieval means, selecting a 
desired image from the plurality of target comparison 
20 images, 

wherein said processing means extracts the image 
selected by said selection means from said storage 
means, and executes a process for the extracted image. 

8 . The apparatus according to claim 1 , further 

25 comprising designation means for designating a type of 
process for the image retrieved by said retrieval 
means , 



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CFM03547/P204-0129 



wherein said processing means extracts the 
retrieved image and executes the designated process on 
the basis of the type of process designated by said 
designation means . 
5 9 . The apparatus according to claim 8 , wherein said 
designation means can designate at least one process 
from printing, distribution, storage, and editing. 

10. The apparatus according to claim 1, further 
comprising segmentation means for segmenting the 

10 reference comparison image into a plurality of regions 

on the basis of an attribute, 

wherein said grayscale feature amount extraction 

means extracts the grayscale feature amount from a 

region having a predetermined attribute among the 
15 plurality of regions segmented by said segmentation 

means . 

11. The apparatus according to claim 4, further 
comprising segmentation means for segmenting the 
reference comparison image into a plurality of regions 

20 on the basis of an attribute, 

wherein said grayscale feature amount extraction 
means extracts the grayscale feature amount from a 
region having a first attribute among the plurality of 
regions segmented by said segmentation means, and 

25 said color feature amount extraction means 

extracts the color feature amount from a region having 
a second attribute among the plurality of regions 



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CFM03547/P204-0129 



segmented by said segmentation means. 

12. The apparatus according to claim 1, further 

comprising : 

text feature amount extraction means for 
5 extracting a text feature amount of a text image in the 
reference comparison image; and 

segmentation means for segmenting the reference 
comparison image into a plurality of regions on the 
basis of an attribute, 
10 wherein said grayscale feature amount extraction 

means extracts the grayscale feature amount from a 
region having a first attribute among the plurality of 
regions segmented by said segmentation means, 

said text feature amount extraction means 
15 extracts the text feature amount from a region having a 
text attribute among the plurality of regions segmented 
by said segmentation means , and 

said retrieval means retrieves the target 
comparison image corresponding to the reference 
20 comparison image from said storage means by using the 
grayscale feature amount extracted by said grayscale 
feature amount extraction means and the text feature 
amount extracted by said text feature amount extraction 
means . 

25 13. The apparatus according to claim 1, further 
comprising: 

color feature amount extraction means for 



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CFM03547/P204-0129 



extracting a color feature amount of a color of an 
image ; 

text feature amount extraction means for 
extracting a text feature amount of a text image; 
5 segmentation means for segmenting the reference 

comparison image into a plurality of regions on the 
basis of an attribute; and 

determination means for determining whether to 
retrieve a region having a predetermined attribute 
10 among the regions segmented by said segmentation means 
on the basis of color information, 

wherein said grayscale feature amount extraction 
means extracts the grayscale feature amount from a 
region determined by said determination means not to 
15 undergo retrieval based on the color information, 
said color feature amount extraction means 
extracts the color feature amount from a region 
determined by said determination means to undergo 
retrieval based on the color information, 
20 said text feature amount extraction means 

extracts the text feature amount from a region having a 
text attribute among the regions segmented by said 
segmentation means, and 

said retrieval means retrieves the target 
25 comparison image corresponding to the reference 

comparison image from said storage means on the basis 
of the extracted grayscale feature amount, the 



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CFM0354 7/P204-0129 



extracted color feature amount, and the extracted text 
feature amount . 

14. The apparatus according to claim 13, wherein the 
region having the predetermined attribute includes an 

5 image block, and the region having the text attribute 
includes a text block. 

15. The apparatus according to claim 1, further 
comprising registration means for extracting a feature 
amount from a registration image and registering the 

10 feature amount as the reference comparison image in 
said storage means. 

16. The apparatus according to claim 15, wherein the 
feature amount extracted by said registration means 
includes the grayscale feature amount . 

15 17. The apparatus according to claim 15, further 
comprising segmentation means for segmenting the 
registration image into a plurality of regions on the 
basis of an attribute, 

wherein said registration means extracts and 

20 registers a feature amount corresponding to an 

attribute of the region segmented by said segmentation 
means . 

18. An image processing method comprising: 

an input step of inputting a reference comparison 
25 image obtained from a printed material; 

a grayscale feature amount extraction step of 
extracting a grayscale feature amount of the reference 



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CFM03547/P204-0129 



comparison image; 

a retrieval step of retrieving a target 
comparison image corresponding to the reference 
comparison image from a plurality of electronic data 
5 stored as target comparison images in a storage medium, 
by using the grayscale feature amount extracted in the 
grayscale feature amount extraction step; and 

a process step of extracting the image retrieved 
in the retrieval step from the storage medium and 
10 processing the extracted image. 
19. A program comprising: 

a program code for an input step of inputting a 
reference comparison image obtained from a printed 
material; 

15 a program code for a grayscale feature amount 

extraction step of extracting a grayscale feature 
amount of the reference comparison image; 

a program code for a retrieval step of retrieving 
a target comparison image corresponding to the 

20 reference comparison image from a plurality of 

electronic data stored as target comparison images in a 
storage medium, by using the grayscale feature amount 
extracted in the grayscale feature amount extraction 
step; and 

25 a program code for a process step of extracting 

the image retrieved in the retrieval step from the 
storage medium and processing the extracted image. 



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